Top 5 Reasons to Get Renter’s Insurance
35% of the U.S. population consists of renters. With such a huge number of people renting, it then comes as a no-brainer that they should get some rental insurance.
Sadly, the majority of renters don’t have any type of rental insurance, according to a recent survey. This means that many renters are at risk of losing their property and belongings to common perils.
Don’t think you need renter’s insurance? Think again! The average renter has personal property worth $20,000. Plus, they are more likely to become a burglary victim than a homeowner.
With a renter’s insurance, you are covered for loss or property damage. Of course, the insurance type varies depending on the property occupied and perhaps the property covered.
1. You’ll have an easier time shopping for your next apartment.
Yes, landlords can require renter’s insurance as a condition of leases in most states (Oklahoma is an exception). So by having one, you may increase your rental options the next time you are apartment hunting.
Homeowner’s insurance cost is rising faster than that of renters’ insurance. In 2012, for example, the average premiums for renters’ insurance and homeowners’ insurance increased by 0% and 5.6%, respectively, in just one year.
Legally, a landlord can only ask you to have a renters’ insurance when renewing an existing lease or when signing a new lease contract. By ensuring yourself beforehand, you’ll be ready to find a new place – or can have ammunition to prevent a rent raise.
2. It’s affordable.
Unlike other types of insurance, renters’ insurance won’t break the bank. Depending on where you live and how much stuff you have, you may spend less than $300 a year on the policy.
The average renters’ insurance policy costs between $15 and $30 a month for property coverage worth $50,000, according to the National Association of Insurance Commissioners.
An even lower amount is also possible. Check for additional potential savings for:
- Having special status (such as military, college student, or senior citizen).
- Staying claim-free for a specific period of time.
- Bundling with existing car insurance policy.
- Being part of a special interest group (such as alumni association, or a labor union).
- Being a non-smoker.
- Having certain security or fire-prevention systems.
3. It covers your guests’ injuries.
Life happens. Say, one day your dog bites your neighbor’s son, requiring your neighbor to spend several hundred dollars in medical expenses. Or, one night, one of your friends slips and falls down at your apartment, seriously injuring his back.
While you may not be able to prevent every single event, you can protect yourself against any potential lawsuit.
If a court rules against you, then the liability portion of your renters’ insurance would cover the accident-related medical bills.
Bear in mind that not all dog breeds can be insured. Many insurance companies don’t offer coverage for German Shepherds, Rottweilers, Doberman Pinschers, Staffordshire Terriers, and Pit Bulls.
4. Protection of your personal property.
Obviously, this is one of the most fundamental reasons renters should get renters’ insurance. However, many renters have the misconception that their landlord’s property insurance will cover them in case of property damage or theft.
Generally, a landlord’s insurance only covers the structure itself, along with the landlord’s own liability, of course.
So, if the building caught fire, your landlord’s insurance coverage will likely cover the structural repairs. However, without a renters’ insurance, you’ll have to foot your own bill when it comes to your personal belongings.
Commonly referred to as renters’ insurance, a standard HO-4 insurance contract provides the necessary protection for your property against perils like vandalism, theft, fire, and certain natural disasters.
If you live in an area prone to flooding, you may have to take an additional policy. For instance, you can take out extra earthquake coverage, or sewer or drain backup coverage. Also, if you own something valuable like a pricey jewelry, you may want to cover those separately as well.
5. It might be necessary when leasing an apartment.
As already told, an increasing number of landlords require tenants to have a renter’s insurance. It isn’t required under the landlord-tenant laws, but your landlord may require it as part of the leasing process.
Below are a couple of reasons why an increasing number of landlords are requiring it.
- It mitigates the threat of a lawsuit from tenants that may try to claim some type of landlord responsibility when they incur property damage.
- It helps them in the tenant screening process. If prospective tenant complaints about getting the renter’s insurance, landlords consider it a red flag.
- It covers their deductible. If you cause damage to their property, their insurance will cover the repair costs. But, they’ll be stuck paying the deductible.
All of these are good reasons why you should get a renters’ insurance if you don’t already have one. If you have got questions about renter’s insurance, please contact your insurance agent or carrier.